Habits that encourage a healthy lifestyle vary from eating a balanced diet, exercising frequently and monitoring blood pressure and cholesterol levels. Such habits and other healthy lifestyle habits can also prevent vision loss .
The major causes of blindness and vision loss in the United States are retinal diseases like diabetic retinopathy and age-related macular degeneration (AMD) . In light of this fact, you can take steps to prevent vision loss and support retina health, especially if you have a higher risk for retinal diseases.
How healthy lifestyle habits affect your retinal health
We explore some healthy lifestyle habits or choices that can impact your retinal health below.
- Regular dilated retina exams as a lifestyle choice can safeguard your vision. This is because many retinal diseases cannot be easily noticed in the initial stages. Routine dilated retina examinations can detect symptoms of a retinal condition early, prior to widespread damage.
- Eating nutritious foods like dark, leafy greens and fish, or consuming a diet rich in Omega-3 fatty acids, lutein and zeaxanthin is linked to a lower risk of age-related macular degeneration (AMD).
- Quitting smoking that causes vision loss and blindness can reduce the risks of AMD. After all, studies have revealed that people who smoke are way more vulnerable to AMD than non-smokers.
- Regulating your blood sugar, blood pressure and cholesterol levels. One recommended way of reducing your risk of vision loss and curbing diabetic eye disease is to carefully regulate your blood sugar, blood pressure, and cholesterol levels.
- Staying active by exercising and maintaining a healthy weight would reduce your chances of getting AMD. Besides, exercise curbs obesity, high blood pressure and cholesterol, thus enhancing eye health. Encourage your family to stay active to safeguard their eye health.
- Knowing your family history, especially if vision issues have plagued your family members. Retinal conditions like AMD, diabetic retinopathy and even retinal detachments may be hereditary.
- Shielding your eyes from the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays is a useful lifestyle habit to adopt. This is because UV rays from the sun are damaging to both our eyes and skin. Hence, wear a pair of UV-shielding sunglasses to shield your eyes from both UVA and UVB rays and don a hat or cap when outdoors.
- Wearing safety glasses and goggles when doing certain activities can protect your eyes from injuries like chemical spills and sharp objects. Most eye care providers and some sporting goods stores sell these forms of eye goggles .
Monitor your vision while leading a healthy lifestyle and find a retina specialist if you encounter adult symptoms for retinal disease like blurred central vision, loss of color vision, distortion or straight lines appearing wavy, and new or worsening floaters or flashes of light .
 “Healthy habits to preserve healthy vision – ASRS.” [Online]. Available: https://www.asrs.org/content/documents/patients-guide-to-healthy-habits-for-healthy-vision-final.pdf. [Accessed: 24-Aug-2022].
 A. S. of R. Specialists, “Protect healthy vision with 7 habits for healthy retinas,” Newswise, 05-May-2022. [Online]. Available: https://www.newswise.com/articles/protect-healthy-vision-with-7-habits-for-healthy-retinas. [Accessed: 24-Aug-2022].
 “Keep your eyes healthy,” National Eye Institute. [Online]. Available: https://www.nei.nih.gov/learn-about-eye-health/healthy-vision/keep-your-eyes-healthy. [Accessed: 26-Aug-2022].